Dec 2 (Lk 21:25-28; 34-36 – First Sunday of Advent)

In a particular place, a bus driver had reached a unique record:

>> In the 23 years of his service, he had driven a bus for over 1,00,000 kilometers…

… without a single accident.

When asked how he had done it, he had just one simple advice: “Watch the road!”

Watching the road had made him to always be focused and concentrated…

… and to have a flawless record.

“Watching the Road” is an important refrain that we all can follow in our Christian life…

… and thus be focused and concentrated always God’s Ways and on His Kingdom.

The Gospel of the Day is a strong warning and a call to always be on the guard and to “always watch the road!”

We are on the first day of the Season of Advent.

In the Church, there are six different liturgical seasons…

1. The Season of Advent is a time to become aware of God’s deep faithfulness and preparing our hearts to receive Him more deeply into our lives.

2. The Season of Christmas invites us to experience, thank and cherish the intervention of God in our lives and to grow deeper in the understanding of the ‘Emmanuel God’ – the God Who is with us!

3. The Season of Lent invites us to focus on the reality of sin and make repentance.

4. The Season of Holy Triduum invites to focus and experience the passion, death and Resurrection of our Blessed Lord

5. The Season of Easter invites us to focus on the mighty power of God through His Resurrection and the New life He promises.

6. The Season of the Ordinary Times invites us to focus on daily life and teachings of Jesus and draw practical conclusions for our life.

>> Advent is a time…

… to become more aware of the presence of the Lord in our lives.

… to wake up from the slumber of sin to a life of grace and blessing.

… to shake off the dust of sluggishness and become more zealous and fervent.

The central theme of reading of the Day is Jesus’ warning to each one of us to be alert, watchful and prepared because Christ’s Second Coming can occur at any time.

We are invited to examine ourselves in asking….

>> Am I casually wasting away my life, without giving enough attention to my spiritual life?

>> Am I spending my time enjoying in vain, without paying attention to the higher things of life?

>> Am I dozing off in lethargy and laziness and failing to carry out my Christian responsibilities?

The Gospel of the Day speaks of the various signs that would signal the coming of the Son of Man. (Lk 21: 25-28)

It also gives a strict warning and a hard reminder to be always on the alert and be on the watch.

>> “But take heed lest that day come upon you suddenly like a snare” (Lk 21: 34-35)

The Greek word used for “snare” is “pagis”.

> ‘Pagis’ comes from the word ‘pegnumi’ which means “a set up or a fix”.

It is a trap (fixed or fastened by a noose or notch) which can fall suddenly so that wild animals and birds are caught by surprise.

>> And when it is set off there is no time to withdraw and avoid getting caught.

As soon as the prey takes the first bite or the first step, the snare is set off and before the prey knows what happened, they are caught.

The Lord describes His Second Coming to the World as this ‘snare, giving no time or chance for escape.

Everyone who is caught up with the cares of this life – the day will come on them like a snare!

This, therefore, calls for alertness and watchfulness at all times.

>> Our whole life, ought to be drenched in preparation and vigilance.

But often times, we tend to allow laxity and sloppiness to dominate our lives.

>> Though we sense the fire of sins and transgressions burning in our lives, we play the fiddle of making many excuses and postpone the need to repent.

>> Though we sense the fire of indifference and unconcern burning in our relationships, we play the fiddle of not taking the lead to improve our contacts and slip into more hatred.

>> Though we sense the fire of abuses and corruption burning in our society, we play the fiddle of passing the responsibility onto others and promote those evils by our apathy and lack of concern.

This Season of Advent is a wonderful time to renew our commitment and consecration to the Lord.

The Lord wishes to come into our hearts….

… God will fulfill His promise of coming into us, when we do our part of being watchful and prepared.

As St. Thomas Aquinas says:

“Without God, I can’t.

Without me, He won’t.”

> Let us become more watchful.

> Let us become more prayerful.

May we remain ever focused and concentrated always on God’s Ways and on His Kingdom…

… and always “Watch the Road!”

God Bless! Live Jesus!

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